Military forces have long used camouflage as a means of hiding from the enemy. In other cases, they’ve gone above and beyond, forming crafty plans to undermine the intelligence of their rivals. Here are seven examples of military disguises that bordered on the edge of absurd – and worked.
7. Hiding Explosives in Everyday Cooking Flour
In Southeast Asia, the OSS had plans to disrupt the Japanese forces. With this in mind, they looked to chemist George Bogdan Kistiakowsky for assistance. And he didn’t disappoint, as he created an explosive that could not only be disguised as flour, but could even be used for baking, leaving no room for suspicion from the enemy.
The so-called “Aunt Jemima” formula contained three parts explosive and one part flour. It could easily be transported and snuck past the supervision of Japanese troops. If any did find reason to mistrust the imported flour, a realistic (and edible) loaf of bread could be prepared and served, proving it was, in fact, simply “flour.”
And though people could ingest the original mixture, it had the possibility of making the eater fairly sick. In fact, providing an example involuntarily, a Chinese cook ate a muffin without permission, leading to an illness that nearly took his life.
After said incident, a second version was created to be far less toxic and could be eaten in moderation with no issue. By the end of the operation, over 15 tons of “Aunt Jemima” infiltrated the area – and the Japanese never discovered the hidden explosives.